USDA, DuPont Working on Faster E. coli Test for Beef

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service is working with DuPont to find new ways to detect an E. coli strain in beef that can cause severe human illnesses, DuPont announced today.

The company said a cooperative research and development agreement is linking the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center at Clay Center, Neb., and DuPont Qualicon to develop a new test for E. coli 0157:H7, a pathogen that caused more than 30 million pounds of ground beef to be recalled in 2007. "We are committed to providing the meat industry with testing applications that use the best science available. This agreement allows us to work with experts from the USDA ARS toward our common goal of an E. coli O157:H7 test that is even faster, more accurate, and more efficient," said Kevin Huttman, president of DuPont Qualicon.

"Our mission is to develop scientific information and new technology to solve high-priority problems for the U.S. beef, sheep, and swine industries," said Mohammad Koohmaraie, director of the Nebraska center. "In the case of E. coli O157:H7 detection, we're looking at collaborative ways to quickly develop a new test."

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